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Poster: tomwsmf Date: Jul 27, 2006 6:13pm
Forum: oldtimeradio Subject: Mp3 ogg shn flac raw

Early on in the phase of OTR collecting/listening that takes place online there were some choices made by folks about whether to put out the best sounding files in the format that has the least loss but had huge file sizes, mediocre sounding files that lost a little but where smaller file sized or really bad sounding files in realaudio that where small but nearly unlistenable.

Back at that time in the 90's folks were mostly on 56K dialup or what we would now consider lower speed dsl (128K/256K). That fact convinced many folks to go the middle route. Over time as the speed and capacity of our net connections got better folks have gone back over the files looking for the best made or have gone back to the source material and re encoded at better quality. The hard work of many hands has gone into making some amazing sounding files that are not huge in size. Those folks deserve medals.

Flac is a great format for audio with very little damage to the signal, the trade off is the files are much bigger than MP3s. Another factor is the playability of the files. How many FLAC players do you know of versus MP3 players? Yes more are being made, but compared to MP3 players its still smaller.

Flac would be a great way to put top notch archives of the source material up. This way when a new format comes along or the winds shift such that old formats can get better a new encoding can be made fairly easily to that new format or improved format.

I love that Archive.org will take what you upload and re encode it to several different formats. I wonder, and those who have been on the Dead,SC or other flaccentric groups might know, does the archive.org upload process take a flac and do the re encode dance with it like it does for mp3s and ogg?

And Speaking Of Ogg and Flac...yes Tom is going ot get on his Open Source soapbox now...its a great format that allows you to encode at some very high bit rates and instantly be able to play it back at what ever bit rate you want/need. So a 320kbs encoded file could be played back at 128kbs or even 48kbs for netcasting need. If you have not already checked it out .

The thing that rally makes both ogg and flac shine is that they have great non user abusive licenses, they are open open open which makes me happy. While we all use mp3 and it will likely never go away it is still a rather closed , yet very abused , license. Do I have lots of files in ogg or flac...nope..becuase the rest of the world is not making it easy to have players that play them or folks encoding files in those formats. Flac has a great penetration here on archive.org though

As for OTR folks not being into change, heck in the last 10 years there has been more change to the sceen than anyone could have thought. Lets keep that train going cause it has brought more listeners to the radio and more folks who love the whole OTR sceen such that its continued growth is looking mighty fine.

Ogg info http://www.vorbis.com/faq/
Flac info http://flac.sourceforge.net/faq.html

-tomhiggins

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Poster: Administrator, Curator, or StaffDiana Hamilton Date: Jul 28, 2006 7:25am
Forum: oldtimeradio Subject: Re: Mp3 ogg shn flac raw

Flac is a great format for audio with very little damage to the signal, the trade off is the files are much bigger than MP3s. Another factor is the playability of the files. How many FLAC players do you know of versus MP3 players? Yes more are being made, but compared to MP3 players its still smaller.

The good news is it's not "little damage", it's *no* damage with flac- you can get a bit-identical version back out of what you put in. Yep they are bigger than mp3 but they're still ~50% filesize rel to the parent wavs.

Flac players (winamp, foobar, dbpoweramp off the top of my head) are getting more common, but of course flac can always be decompressed and played from the wavs. The material can always be burned to full-quality audio CDs from there too (the way I personally listen to the good stuff- not on a PC).

Flac would be a great way to put top notch archives of the source material up. This way when a new format comes along or the winds shift such that old formats can get better a new encoding can be made fairly easily to that new format or improved format.

Yep, it's the archivally-minded angle that makes the lossless format the most appealing in cases like this. And though 16-bit flac (audio-CD compatible) is most common, some early adopter live music tapers for instance are also preserving their material in 24-bit flac against the future, and even looking forward to higher bitrates! :)

I love that Archive.org will take what you upload and re encode it to several different formats. I wonder, and those who have been on the Dead,SC or other flaccentric groups might know, does the archive.org upload process take a flac and do the re encode dance with it like it does for mp3s and ogg?

Take a look at typical items in http://www.archive.org/details/etree
In that collection we *require* people to upload in .flac or .shn only so that we start with the lossless. From those, the Archive will automatically generate .mp3 (vbr and 64K right now), ogg, and streaming vbr/64, with a flash player for the 64K too- and there's the possibility to add even more derivative options in the future, since we have the lossless starting point.

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Poster: hykos1045 Date: Aug 8, 2006 6:20pm
Forum: oldtimeradio Subject: Re: Mp3 ogg shn flac raw

My recorder allows me to record as mp3 only. It is a cowon america iaudio unit with internal microphone and the option to input an external mic. I spent about $350 for it.

I imagine the units which record in the lossless formats are bound to be more expensive because they would provide better quality and also might need more memory space. could anyone please recommend a brand and/or price range for such a portable unit? also, what do you do to combat crowd noise, or keep it from interfering with the integrity of the recording.